Federal Relations

NSF Provides Details on Recovery Act Spending Plans

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has released details on how it will spend funding provided in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

Key points of the NSF plan include the following:

  • NSF will use a large share of its ARRA funding to address the backlog of existing proposals.  The notice states, “With the exception of the Major Research Instrumentation, Academic Research Infrastructure and Science Masters programs, the majority of proposals eligible for Recovery Act funding include those that are already in house and will be reviewed and/or awarded prior to September 30, 2009…NSF also will consider proposals declined on or after October 1, 2008.”
  • Proposals supported with ARRA funds will have to be expended in a timely fashion. The notice states, “Given the goals of the Recovery Act, awardees will be informed that they are expected to expend funds in a timely manner on allowable award costs and that NSF will be monitoring awards for expenditures. If, after 12 months, no allowable expenditures have taken place, NSF may consider reducing or terminating the award and reallocating the funds.”
  • All grants issued with Recovery Act funds will be standard grants with durations of up to five years. The notice says this approach “will allow NSF to structure a sustainable portfolio.”
  • Funding for new principal investigators and high-risk, high-return research will be a top priority for ARRA funding.